Monday, November 19, 2007

Dosa Heaven

This morning (after a quick run) Alex and I finally went to Hotel Mylari for dosa. For those of you who are unfamilliar with dosa (and I do pity you!), it's most easily described as the South Indian version of the crepe. The batter is made from slightly fermented rice and urud dal, and it can be filled with aloo palya (a dry potato curry) to make the ever-popular masala dosa. Coat the inside with a bit of red garlic chutney, fold it into a triangle and you get the Mysore masala dosa. Paper dosa, set dosa, rava (semolina) dosa... there are, you see, several variations on this theme. Dosa is usually served with coconut chutney and sambar (though you get sagu with rava dosa.) They are remarkably consistant; no matter where you get them, they taste just about the same.

Hotel Mylari is, frankly, a bit of a dump. It's located on a narrow street just off the city center and has a very local feel. To get inside I had to circumvent a massive cow who was engaged in his morning purification (!). There are about 8 small booths, two of which are actually located inside the kitchen itself. They serve only two items, plain and masala dosa, and they do them extremely well. The dosa are soft and slightly spongy, not crispy, and melt in your mouth. Imagine something like an exceptionally delicious buttermilk pancake. The "masala" has a unique coconutty (dare I say Keralan*?) taste. They're served on stainless steel plates covered by bits of banana leaf, with a dollop of butter on top and ladles-ful of coconut chuttney dumped on the side.

Alex and I ate two masala dosa each, and he had a cup of chai. The bill came to 53 rupees, about $1.30.

* Surely Mylar is a place, but I've yet to discover where it is.


Post a Comment

<< Home